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IMF/World Bank not behind subsidy removal – Okonjo-Iweala

The Minister of Finance and the coordinating minister of the economic team, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has assured Nigerians that the monthly revenue of subsidy to the three tiers of government as well as the projects that it would be channeled to would be published in national dailies just like their accounts was published during her first coming.

The Minister who appeared alongside the Governor of the Central Bank (CBN) in the magazine Programme: “Matters Arising” on AIT decried abuses metted out to her person and IMF/World Bank, said people were not being fair and were turning truth on it’s head just to score cheap political points.
Okonjo-Iweala said the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE), was an important document that was painfully produced, one that every Nigerian should have to monitor projects and raise alarm if progress are not being made.

“For the first time ahead of time this document the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURe), a powerful document has been produced, the trust of Nigerians will come when people begin to see what is done with the money. Remember how we began publishing the local government revenue, for the first time. “People could see how much does my local government, my state, Federal Government get monthly. Information is power, with it you can ask many questions and it is also for the people to ask that if this is what accrues to my state how come I have not been seeing infrastructures, or why are these ministers not doing their jobs and they are taking our monies away?
“The same way, we will publish subsidy amount and where we will channel the money to so that they can go and verify. Today we have social media and so if we say this is where we are putting the money to and you don’t see it, we will have some numbers where people can text the information.

If we say we are repairing the Lagog-Shagamu-Ore road and you go there and you find out the work is not progressing you raise alarm, because this money must be used in a way that will benefit Nigerians, every single programme will be accounted for. Lastly on this, you will have this independent baseline committee that the president has set up, which will also afford Nigerians to know what is happening, recognising we have limited resources. This will afford Nigerians opportunity to monitor what is going on.”

The Minister while pleading with Nigerians to bear the temporal pain for future again, said, “I have to say we understand how Nigerians feel but if we don’t continue on this line painful as it is, we will face greater pain than the situation we are facing viz-a-viz European countries now who would ever thought will happen to them.”

“The truth is additional monies will be coming in, we should remember that Nigeria’s revenue come in on a monthly bases through sales of oil and the royalties and taxes that we get from where we pay our salaries and other expenditure, so this is based on a cash flow, this is additional resources. We are aware that some of these projects are ongoing but we don’t want them to take ten years. We have over 6000 uncompleted projects so lets take this additional money that is coming in from subsidy, add to the one we have from regular budget and execute our projects”.

Asked if Nigeria was so broke as not to reverse its decision, she said, “Nigeria is not broke but if we continue to pile up debts for the next governments, to fund consumables, five years down the line it will. We are all alive and saw when Government could not pay pensions and even the police if there is a major revenue shock today we will have so much damage”.

On the allegations by Nigerians that removal of subsidy was her idea and that of IMF World Bank, she said, “subsidy removal was the idea of governors. This subsidy issue has been on for years, six months before I came it, why did they not say at that time that it was Okonjo-Iweala and IMF/World Bank? Two weeks ago it was written in the papers that governors were supporting subsidy removal but today people are saying is Okonjo-Iweala and IMF/World Bank, is it fair? No, people should admit the truth!

They are just looking for excuse. Now you know that for two months, governors and commissioners of finance did not collect Federal Accounts and Allication Committee (FAAC), do you remember? Was that IMF/World Bank? They (governors) said once we remove one kobo for subsidy they will not collect because they don’t want subsidy, how is that IMF/World Bank? People should be very fair, this is not about me, this is about government’s policy that has been on before I got here. Those who don’t want me here are the ones twisting the whole thing saying is Okonjo-Iweala IMF/World Bank.”


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Posted by on Jan 11 2012. Filed under General Politics, Latest Politics, Women Politics. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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